SNL's Kerry Washington Episode: 5 Best Scenes

SNL acknowledges its diversity problem; Kerry Washington and Jay Pharoah parody "What Does the Fox Say?"; the secrets of Angela Merkel, and more.

Scandal star Kerry Washington was a versatile, poised, and funny host, taking on roles from Oprah to a confused Ugandan beauty pageant contestant to a Spelman College political science professor. In the cold open, SNL directly addressed the recent controversy surrounding its lack of a permanent female cast member. Musical guest Emimen performed "Berzerk" (with Rick Rubin as DJ) and "Survival" with Skylar Grey.

Some highlights...

Cold open—Kerry Washington as Michelle Obama... and Oprah Winfrey... and Beyoncé... ("The producers of SNL would like to apologize for the number of black women Kerry Washington will be asked to play tonight... We made these requests because SNL does not currently have a black woman in the cast...") Also featuring a cameo by the Reverend Al Sharpton.


"What Does My Girl Say?"—cheating boyfriend (Jay Pharoah) and his outraged girlfriend (Kerry Washington) parody the viral European dance video "The Fox (What Does the Fox Say?)"


Black voters Kenan Thompson, Jay Pharoah, and Kerry Washington weigh in on the Obama presidency and other matters. ("White people have an expectation that everything will work perfectly right away. Have you ever seen a white person at a hotel when they're told the room isn't ready yet?...")


Charles Barkley (Kenan Thompson) and a crosseyed, befuddled Shaquille O'Neal (Jay Pharoah) drop by Weekend Update to discuss the new NBA season.


"Ice Cream"—an offhand joke at the ice cream parlor messes with people's minds.


Also: Angela Merkel (Kate McKinnon) is mortified by the dark personal truths about her unveiled by NSA surveillance; Yemen-born career consultant "Heshi" (Nasim Pedrad) inspires students with her personal success story and dramatic soundtrack ("I've officially been approved for an OKCupid account!..."); Booker T. Washington High School's beleaguered Principal Frye (Jay Pharoah) is back, attempting to keep his students under control at Fall Carnival.

NEXT, on November 16: Lady Gaga as host and musical guest.

Presented by

Sage Stossel is a contributing editor at The Atlantic and draws the cartoon feature "Sage, Ink." She is author/illustrator of the graphic novel Starling, and of the children's books  On the Loose in Boston and On the Loose in Washington, DC. More

On Election Day in 1996, launched a weekly editorial cartoon feature drawn by Sage Stossel and named (aptly enough) "Sage, Ink." Since then, Stossel's whimsical work has been featured by the New York Times Week in Review, CNN Headline News, Cartoon Arts International/The New York Times Syndicate, The Boston Globe, Nieman Reports, Editorial Humor, The Provincetown Banner (for which she received a 2009 New England Press Association Award), and elsewhere. Her work has also been included in Best Editorial Cartoons of the Year, (2005, 2006, 2009, and 2010 editions) and Attack of the Political Cartoonists. Her children's book, On the Loose in Boston, was published in June 2009.

Sage Stossel grew up in a suburb of Boston and attended Harvard University, where she majored in English and American Literature and Languages and did a weekly cartoon strip about college life, called "Jody," for the Harvard Crimson. From 2004 to 2007, she served as Books Editor of the Radcliffe Quarterly

After college she took what was intended to be a temporary summer position securing electronic rights to articles from The Atlantic's archive for use online. Intrigued by The Atlantic's rich history and the creative possibilities in helping to launch a digital edition of the magazine on the Web, she soon joined The Atlantic full time. As the site's former executive editor, she was involved in everything from contributing reviews, author interviews, and illustrations, to hosting message boards and producing a digital edition of The Atlantic for the Web.

Stossel lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register with Disqus.

Please note that The Atlantic's account system is separate from our commenting system. To log in or register with The Atlantic, use the Sign In button at the top of every page.

blog comments powered by Disqus


A Stop-Motion Tour of New York City

A filmmaker animated hundreds of still photographs to create this Big Apple flip book


The Absurd Psychology of Restaurant Menus

Would people eat healthier if celery was called "cool celery?"


This Japanese Inn Has Been Open For 1,300 Years

It's one of the oldest family businesses in the world.


What Happens Inside a Dying Mind?

Science cannot fully explain near-death experiences.

More in Entertainment

Just In